2. Casey Mize - RHP
While Skubal is the team's ace in my book, there are reasons to be excited about what the 2024 season might bring for Detroit Tigers pitcher Casey Mize. I have my concerns and worries about his future with the club, but for now, I'm buying back in and hoping he can achieve success in his return to the mound.
There was a chance he would have pitched in 2023 for the Tigers, but he ended up experiencing some setbacks that ultimately pushed back the timeline, putting an end to hopes of a return. All-in-all, that's alright. Letting Mize take his sweet time is the right move, ensuring he's truly back to 100% before sending him to the mound again after Tommy John surgery.
Mize has not thrown a pitch in a Tigers game since the early parts of the 2022 season, so he's got to be itching for some big-league competition once again. That being said, there's a chance Mize can jump back in and be the pitcher he was during the 2022 season with the Tigers.
3. Kenta Maeda - RHP
While there's been a lot of buzz in itself about the Detroit Tigers adding Maeda, it's all been good for the most part. Bringing in Maeda will allow him to settle into the middle of the rotation as somewhat of an anchor.
Maeda's pretty consistently around the league average or a bit above it, so adding him into the mix is only a good thing for the Tigers. He's got bat-missing stuff and a track record of going out and eating up innings, which the Tigers desperately need. So Maeda will do that in 2024, being a bit of an innings eater.
Even if he's not Aaron Nola or Yoshinobu Yamamoto, Maeda will serve a purpose with this Tigers team. Plus, he's much better than paying someone like $12 million to perform similar to that of Mike Pelfrey in his heyday.